DENVER - The Office of the Attorney General has obtained a Consent Judgment Order against a series of Denver, Lakewood, Littleton and Wheatridge-based magazine-sales telemarketing companies and their principals on suspicion that they deceived and defrauded consumers in Colorado and throughout the nation. The defendant’s include Robert Makatura, Raymond Makatura, Lucille Makatura, Rita Rohleder, Rocky Mountain Readers Service, Inc., Magazine/One, LLC, Increase Publications, LLC, I.N.C. & Associates, N R and Assoc. Inc., Neighborhood Readers and Associates, National Readers and Associates, First Premier Subscriber Services, Inc., Crown Marketing, Inc., Class Media, Inc., H.J.H. Limited Liability Company, Consumer Network of America, LLC, and Consumers of America.
The Final Consent Judgment constitutes a complete settlement and release of all claims under the Colorado Consumer Protection Act against the defendants. The defendants expressly deny the allegations in the complaint and the parties agree that the defendants’ agreement to enter into this judgment is not an admission of fault.
The order not only prohibits the defendants from implying the solicitor is affiliated with the consumers current publisher or distributor of a particular magazine but also prevents the solicitor from representing to the consumer they are lowering the total cost of an existing subscription, lowering periodic payments, or saving the consumer money off an existing subscription if such is not the case. The defendants are permanently enjoined from engaging in magazine solicitations in the State of Colorado effective March 31, 2013. Raymond Makatura, Robert Makatura, Lucille Makatura, and Rita Rohleder are enjoined from operating, controlling, directing, receiving compensation from, having an ownership interest in, or receiving payment of any kind from any person or entity that engages in magazine solicitations in the State of Colorado. The court also ordered the defendants to pay a total amount of $475,000.
According to the complaint, the telemarketers misrepresented their affiliation with the consumers existing magazine subscription company as the defendants are suspected of obtaining consumers’ credit-card numbers under false pretenses and offering to lower consumers’ subscription payments, when they actually were trying to sign up consumers for new magazine subscriptions costing up to $1,298. The defendants also are suspected of sharing consumers’ financial information amongst themselves to sign consumers up for magazine subscriptions they had not willingly purchased.
For future case updates or to learn more about recent actions the Office of the Attorney General has filed against companies engaged in deceptive trade practices, visit www.coloradoattorneygeneral.gov/consumercases. Consumers who believe they have fallen victim to a scam can file a complaint via www.coloradoattorneygeneral.gov/complaint.